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Press Release - 1 February 2007

The Russian Federation becomes 44th member of the Group of States against Corruption (GRECO)

The Russian Federation has become the 44th member State of GRECO, which now includes nearly all Council of Europe member States, as well as the Republic of Montenegro and the United States of America (*). The Russian Federation thus joins other member countries who have actively committed themselves to fighting corruption by accepting to participate in the mutual evaluation process.

An evaluation team will go to Moscow during the course of 2007 to deal with issues related to corruption in public administration, the authorities in charge of investigating and prosecuting corruption offences, the immunity from prosecution enjoyed by certain holders of public office, the use of legal persons as shields for corruption and confiscation of profits made by the perpetrators of corruption offences.

Representatives of the Russian Federation will attend GRECO’s first Plenary Meeting in 2007 (19-23 March).

* * *

When presenting, on 19 May 2006, the programme of the Russian Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers, Sergey Lavrov, Minister of Foreign Affairs, underlined the Russian Federation’s commitment to “creating a common European legal space to protect individuals from modern-day challenges”. In this context, the Russian Federation stated its support for the activities of GRECO.

The Council of Europe is also cooperating closely with the State Duma of the Russian Federation within the framework of a project on anti-corruption legislation (RUCOLA 2). The results of this project will assist the Russian Federation in implementing international anti-corruption standards and will thus complement GRECO’s work.
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(*) GRECO is an enlarged partial agreement which was created at the Council of Europe in 1999. It currently comprises 44 members: Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Republic of Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russian Federation, Republic of Serbia, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, "the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia", Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom and United States of America.